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We wait in bathed breath for Uzumaki the anime iteration of Junji Ito’s stunning magnum opus of the same name as a studio that has shown so much promise and a proper adaptation it would seem through various trailers and studio Drive’s PSAs from the director himself, Hiroshi Nagahama. That was almost 3 years ago, and the latest update was a first look that was released a few months ago.

And based on that alone, it would seem Uzumaki anime is on the right track, we might be getting somewhere with it since Adult Swim has given us a 2-minute scene. Studio Drive has multiple projects under its belt, including the upcoming season 3 of KonoSuba: An Explosion on This Wonderful World! They’ve finished working on To Your Eternity Season 2 last year. Already staking their reputation on one that isn’t out.

Why isn’t Uzumaki coming out yet? Well, that has to do with multiple factors, even with a network like Adult Swim backing them up, there are those and a few circumstances we’re underestimating which might have curtailed their progress the past few years since its announcement. 2024 is set to be another blockbuster year for anime fans with titles like – Bleach TYBW Cour 3 and Demon Slayer Season 4 slated for release. The release of Uzumaki could have been the icing on the cake if it had not been indefinitely delayed.

FIRST LOOK: Uzumaki | Toonami | adult swim

What Is Uzumaki

You might have heard of the famed horror mangaka, Junji Ito. His body of work mostly involves body horror with many supernatural and cosmic horror elements interspliced within the world building. Many of Junji Ito’s works have sold out very well, inspiring countless others and being close buddies with Hideo Kojima himself, which also led to his involvement in the cancelled Silent Hills video game.

Uzumaki is his best-selling manga so far, and if you’ve developed a tolerance for body horror, usually from watching David Cronenberg’s early filmography or the recent trend of films that have been coming out, you’d be able to stomach it. Yet one of the great facets of Uzumaki’s is how it affects the characters.

My first reading felt like it was taking me into an abyss, spine chilling and eerie as hell. If anything, Ito was more capable of putting his readers into often unfathomable situations and making them feel uncomfortable in the end or take joy in the bizarreness of the cosmic unknown. It has been over 20 years since Uzumaki came out. And various anime adaptations before haven’t fully captured its depth.

Uzumaki - Poster - Deshi Geek
Uzumaki – Poster – Deshi Geek

Lofty Ambitions

It’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what is going on and is due out of respect that many people waiting for the Uzumaki anime just giving them time to flesh it out and the studio staff has reiterated multiple times that they want to do their best to give us a great adaptation with such creative endeavor.

But some are getting impatient, it’s been over 3 years now and despite the last video showing a 2-minute scene of it, we still have no word or idea when it’s exactly coming out. A lot is riding on this because Warner Bros who owns Adult Swim are funding the project and you have the music composer of Hereditary alumni, Colin Stetson making the score. This kind of harkens back to the day when Western producers became involved in the anime industry. Marvel adaptations notwithstanding.

And, understandably, many of us are kind of paranoid now, considering most of Junji Ito’s works have been adapted before, and a few of them being live live-action, yet all never managed to capture the greatness of his work. If Uzumaki arrived with expectations met or beyond that even, it’ll be the first. Plus, there’s the Junji Ito cameo already recorded in, and good impressions the teasers have left thus far.

Uzumaki Teaser | Toonami

Pressure Is On For Uzumaki

There are other reasons why Uzumaki is getting delayed, the first to start with is the COVID-19 pandemic from 2020, it’s not clear how much of the studio’s workforce was affected, but it does seem like they were really stifled by the lockdown for over a year. To be specific, this wasn’t in a pre-planning stage, everything was set from the start, the storyboarding was done, the voice talents were hired, all this before the director openly stated that the pandemic forced them to restart the project.

Uzumaki was first delayed to 2021 then in June 2022, it was indefinitely delayed. A few teasers and a first look were all we had to go with around the past 4 years. Creative director Jason DeMarco cleared up that last year would be the time the show would be released, yet it hasn’t. Few could say this could either be them stalling it because the project hasn’t reached its final stage or there’s a clear conflict of faith.

I mean, it’s just 4 episodes, not even Attack on Titan season 2 and season 3 had this many issues with release timelines and those arrived as finished products without nibbling on breadcrumbs this long. As if that wasn’t embarrassing enough, this is one of the few Adult Swim original anime series announced.

Uzumaki - Still - Deshi Geek
Uzumaki – Still – Deshi Geek

Spiral Into The Horror Of An Eternity-Long Wait

With Ninja Kamui and Lazarus coming out later this year, where do you put Uzumaki when all those come out? This situation has become so delicate, that people holding their breaths so far have most of them given up on it. Heck, this might come out 2 years from now, 3 years, maybe even in 2030 at the pace it’s going.

This estimate could even be conservative, but ok, enough with beating on the bush. What to do next, now that your favorite horror anime is in release date hell? The last thing to do would be to cause any grievances towards the people working on it, which won’t help obviously. Patience is a virtue; perfection is not something to rush. Have faith that things will come along. For those who haven’t, check the manga out.


Video games aficionado, movie geek, and a bit of fictional reading at times keeps me quite distracted, not even if the end of the world is near will I stop.

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